Las Vegas Foreclosures Continue Upward Climb

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ONE IN SIXTY LAS VEGAS HOMES ARE IN FORECLOSURE
The number of homes delinquent in their mortgage payments continued to rise in the Las Vegas valley, and banks foreclosed on a greater number of homes statewide in April than March, according to California-based real estate research firms.

RealtyTrac reported that Nevada retained its No. 1 ranking in the nation in terms of percentage of foreclosure filings for the 40th consecutive month states the Las Vegas Sun.

In another article in Housing Wire it was reported that foreclosure filings across the country dropped from the year before for the first time since RealtyTrac began measuring the statistics in January 2005.

The company measures default notices, scheduled auctions and bank repossessions across the US. Filings were reported on 333,837 properties in April, a 2% drop from the same month in 2009 and a 9% drop from March.

James Saccacio, CEO of RealtyTrac, said it could be a sign that foreclosure activity is starting to flatten.

“There were two important milestones in the April numbers that show foreclosure activity has begun to plateau — but at a very high level that will not drop off in the near future,” said Saccacio, chief executive officer of RealtyTrac.

The first milestone was the drop in foreclosures. The second was that REO, or properties taken back by the bank, hit a record monthly high of 92,432 in April, up 1% from February and 45% from April 2009. It was a 1% increase from the peak in December 2009.

The shadow inventory of foreclosures should peak in the summer of 2010 before falling gradually in the later months, according to a new report from Barclays Capital.

Barclays defines the shadow inventory of foreclosures as loans in 90-plus day delinquency or already in the foreclosure process. According to the report, there are currently 2.4m loans in 90-plus day delinquency and another 2.1m in foreclosure, totaling 4.5m in the shadow inventory.

Arizona continues to rank high in housing foreclosures — second only to Nevada — but there is one indication the situation may be getting better.

Notices of foreclosure sales — the early stage of foreclosure — in Phoenix were down 17 percent from a year ago in the latest report from Realty Trac states Ktar.

However, the number of properties actually foreclosed on more than doubled.

“So it’s still high up there when you’re comparing it to other metro areas across the country — with one in every 136 housing units receiving a foreclosure notice,” said RealtyTrac’s Daron Blomquist. “That compares to one in every 387 housing units nationwide.”

An increase in short sales means fewer people entering foreclosure, he said.

The number of properties actually in foreclosure are up nearly 60 percent from this time a year ago, but the number of people entering foreclosure is down almost 20 percent.

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